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Doublures in a Divan of Hafez, 1842, Iran.

Doublures are ornamental linings on the inside of a book. Doublures are protected from wear, compared to the outside of a book, and thus offer bookbinders scope for elaborate decoration.

The 15th century Islamic doublures strongly influenced the doublures in Western Europe.[1]

The term doublure is of French origin. Tooled doublures are found in French bookbinding of the seventeenth century: in particular, they are associated with the books of the Jansenist sect, which were extremely simple on the outside, while they had gilding on the doublure.[2] One of the bookbinders known for his Jansenist-style bindings was Luc-Antoine Boyet, binder to Louis XIV. The term Jansenist is also applied to bindings in this style of a much later date.[3]

The British bookbinder G.T. Bagguley patented a process for tooling in colours called the "Sutherland binding" which was principally employed on doublures.[4] Bagguley, who was librarian to the Duke and Duchess of Sutherland, named the process after the duchess.


  1. ^ Thomson, Lawrence S. (2003). "Binding". In Drake, Miriam (ed.). Encyclopedia of Library and Information Science. 1 (2nd ed.). New York, USA: CRC Press. ISBN 0824720776.
  2. ^ French Decorative Bookbinding - Seventeenth Century
  3. ^ Lorenzaccio. "Reading Europe: European culture through the book". The European Library.
  4. ^ The British Library has, for example, a copy of The Glittering Plain from Bagguley's bindery with vellum doublures. (C.69.h.9: BL Catalogue, British Library).